It’s probably the worst kept secret among Oiler faithful, but Ken Holland made it official today.
#Oilers GM & President of Hockey Ops Ken Holland tells @Bob_Stauffer on @OilersNow defenceman Oscar Klefbom is officially out for the 2020-21 season & is hoping to be ready for the start of the 2021-22 campaign.— Edmonton Oilers (@EdmontonOilers) December 21, 2020
Oscar Klefbom and his shoulder will miss the entire 56 game slate this year. The optimist in me hopes that Klefbom will be ready for action at the beginning of the 2021-22 NHL season, so let’s keep those sunglasses on for now. The loss of Klefbom will be felt immediately throughout the defence, though there’s hope that some of that loss was addressed this past offseason.
Klefbom’s absence will no doubt create a hole on the left side. Darnell Nurse and Caleb Jones will likely find themselves as a 1-2 combo, while Kris Russell is right now the most likely candidate for 3LD. Free agent defenceman Tyson Barrie was brought in on a one year deal and will find himself contributing on the power play in Klefbom’s absence.
Klefbom’s absence will free up 4.167 MM in cap space this year, which could come in handy when the Oilers sign Ethan Bear “sometime in the next week or so.”